One of our reporters went on a ride along with a State Trooper in Prototype. The following is his report.
Citizens can get ride alongs with permission of their local PD, but for this report I wanted to see what it was like for a State Trooper. I was assigned an officer in Prototype, who would be handling the day’s patrols in the famous town.
Our day began at 4:30 AM, with a gas up and a cup of coffee at the Rodex Cafe. The server gave him his cup for free, but “reporters always pay full price,” according to Flo.
Our first task was to set up a speed trap for the morning, so we spent a few hours in front of the barn on Old Prototype Road, chatting about the things he had seen.
“It can get wild out here, especially when the NTBI honchos roll in,” he said. I noticed that the patrol car was easily visible and asked why he didn’t park it out of sight. “We’re not the local PD – we don’t have quotas. We want to get people to slow down, not ticket them.”
In the late morning a call came in to check on a logging camp off Old Prototype Road, and we found a still warm chainsaw, but no sign of people. Through dispatch we learned that there should have been a logger there, and began to search the area. The area was heavily wooded and it took some time to find any proof that people had been there. To make matters worse, a small storm came in, and we had to wait in the car for it to subside.
Hours later we went back into the woods and found a body, covered in mud. The Trooper dug away some of the mud to see if the man was still alive, but it was obvious he wasn’t. His arms were bent in painful ways, and he looked as though he had been beaten.
More State Police arrived and cordoned off the scene. Before being ushered away the Trooper said to me “this is the second one like this.”